I have a question about my dogs behaviour that you might possibly be able to shed some light on. My dog is a chow mix...has the face of a lab and a curly tail and black tongue of a chow. He is three years and a bit and plays well with other dogs. However, recently when we took him to the off leash dog park he got scared by another dog who was sniffing him. All of a sudden he started growling this awful nasty kind of growl. So we pulled him away and he went about his business sniffing the grass. However, when other dogs even smaller dogs came up to him, he was very anxious when they tried to sniff him. Ever since when we take him for walks, he sometimes growls like a mad dog at other dogs. I'm not sure if he is getting all protective or what?
We don't take him to the dog park anymore, because we don't want anything to happen to him or another dog. He has always been afraid of larger dogs, even when he was a puppy. He's usually okay with smaller dogs and labs or retrievers. Could it be that he is showing signs of behing extremely afraid and nervous around other dogs and that they can sense his anxiety and then in turn don't know how to react to him...thereby causing both dogs to be on edge?
Is there anything I can do to make him more comfortable with other dogs?
Dear Worried, Yes your dog is terrified of other dogs. I would like to recommend alot of socializing with dogs he does know and like. Also, take the obedience classes at petsmart, because there are lot's of strange dogs there and it is a very controlled enviroment and the trainer will see the problem and be able to help you with it right away. That would be the best i can do for you, but for what it's worth, I had a pit-chow mix that would not tolerate other dogs other than his daughter. As he got older, he became more tolerant,,How old, you ask, well he was about 13 before he decided most dogs weren't the hill he wanted to die on, there were a few "bullies" he never put up with, but he lived to be 16 1/2 and the last 2 years of his life he spent training my Dobes, and did a remarkable job...I'm tearing up so i hav eto stop.
He could be displaying *leash aggression* when he's on the leash. I bet you're actually pulling him in on the leash when other dogs are around which immediately will put him on the defensive. He *feels* your *fear* of the impending situation and reacts to it by *protecting* you......
No worries. Happens to the best of us :)
What I would do is keep him on a slack leash and if another dog approaches, rather than pulling him in, just walk in the other direction saying "Good boy, come here" and he will want to be with you. Don't make a big deal out of it.
In time he may or may not warm up to the idea of other dogs around him. He is 3 and fully mature at this age so it could be his personality. Chows are not known as *social* dogs....
Well, a few things came to mind while I was reading your thread. First, many larger breeds go through ranking stages up to 3 years. So if this is the case, keep him around dogs hes familiar with for while, till hopefully the stage passes. We don't want any fights. I would be curious though to see where the confrontation would lead to. Second, dogs smell eachothers bum areas (glands) for greetings, or identifying. A dog with a tail that is high over its body is advertiseing for others to smell, its a dominant dysplay or like hes a star or something, his name in bright lights, shouting out his name.(Hes hot stuff) If the dog carries his tail down covering the anus, hes saying the opposite, I'm nobody and nothing special (submissive) A chow and some other breeds, have no choice, their tail is naturally held high on the body, so he will get attention, even if he doesn't want it. Hes threatened by the other dog sniffing. His temperment is probly a little less dominant.
***Edited By: sue on 12/9/2005 8:01:26 PM*** Reason: fh
Have you checked your dog all over for any lumps or bumps? Sorry to sound so rude, but are his testicles red and sore looking? This could cause your dog discomfort, and by another dog sniffing around the area it may be causing your dog pain. Your best bet would to get your dog checked by your vet for any underlying issues.